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Child has asthma. Phlegmy cough, chest infection, breathlessness. Have dog

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2008
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My son is 5 and is supposed to have asthma, well for the past month he has had a flemmy cough and a chest infection and is also getting out of breath quite quickly. We have an 8 month old dog and it went through my head that it might be affecting my son but then surely it would of done so before now if it was, any advice would be much appreciated
Posted Wed, 23 May 2012 in Child Health
Answered by Dr. Raju A.T 2 hours later

Thanks for your query.

Animal dandruff specially one like dogs is considered to be a strong allergen which can trigger acute attacks in asthmatics.

If your child is a diagnosed asthmatic then he playing with the dog would be unhealthy. Such exposures may not always trigger an serious episode of breathlessness but set up an subclinical inflammation which may result into pneumonitis and cause productive cough after few weeks or months.Sometimes such an inflammation set up by the dog allergen can also be worsened by a super-added bacterial infection.

Hence, Isolating your son from the dog as much as possible would be recommended.Regular check-up and treatment of the dandruff for the dog by a veterinary specialist would reduce the incidence such a problem in your son.

Hope I have answered your query. Let me know if I can assist you further.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Child has asthma. Phlegmy cough, chest infection, breathlessness. Have dog 17 minutes later
Would an antihistamine help my son?
Answered by Dr. Raju A.T 9 minutes later
Hi again,

Thanks for writing again.

Yes, antihistaminic will help but in initial phase where there is only reaction to the allergen presenting with breathlessness only.Once the Pneumonitis has set in presenting with productive cough then need for other medications like bronchodilators and a course of antibiotics is essential.

Hope I answered all your questions. Please use any answer clarification before closing and rating this answer. I will be happy to explain or expand on any issue you may have.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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